MrCool - 24K DIY Mini-split (Rating: 5)

4th of July weekend of 2018, just over a year ago. I finished the install and had working A/C in my shop.
Short overview of my shop
I have a three car garage that is dedicated to a wood shop. No parking cars in here. about 600 square feet, and fully insulated.
I did have a couple of professional HVAC estimates that proved to be outside of my budget.
But those estimates showed me what size of system I needed, and the proper location in my shop to install it.
So with a little more research, I pulled the trigger on the Mr Cool DIY Mini Split.
So it seemed that the price was the same no matter where I ordered the system from.
With that I chose Home Depot. They offered free shipping to there store. And I figured that if anything went wrong, I could deal with the store, in person. Vs, 1-800 good luck with any number of online retailers.

The system is the Mr Cool DIY 24K Ductless Mini Split HVAC
So it took a good week to get it shipped to HD.
System was packaged very well. Keep in mind how heavy this system is. Two boxes, and you will need help getting it out of your truck.
The install was easy enough, However make sure you have at least two helpers when it comes time to hang the indoor unit. I only had my wife, and she handled the line set as I fed it through the wall. But with about 5' on line left to go, you must pick up the indoor unit and feed the line set at the same time. I about dropped the hole thing. Not to heavy, but bulky.
I handled the outdoor condenser unit by myself, but it is the heaviest part. so you may want a second helper for it too.
The line set comes in two lengths. 16' or 25', Mine is the 25'. I needed 19', so you will see that I had to coil the extra line. I am thinking that I will build a cover for it in the fall.
There are warnings about taking great care as to not crimp the freon lines. The exposed ends are solid copper and could be damaged very easily, and the end on the indoor unit must be carefully bent to feed through the wall. Most of the line set is covered in an insulation, But the area that I needed to expose showed that most of the line set is steel braided line. So a little more friendly to work with.

As far as operating the unit. I have got a couple of issues. And actually, the only special features I have tried to use don't really work.
1st. I had read before I ever bought the system that there were issues with the wifi app. Honestly, I got to agree there. I have never got it to work. Only messed with it a couple times the first week. Never could get it to even connect to my wifi.
2nd. The remote has a follow me setting. The way I understand it, is that the remote acts like a thermostat when this is activated. every 3 minutes the remote is supposed to send a signal to the indoor unit telling it what the temp is at that spot. It does not work either, and is another feature that I only tried to use during the first week.
3rd. So the last thing, and I wonder if its not related to the wifi and follow me feature, is that the remote only works from about 15' max range. The door to my house is right at 20' from the unit. And I mounted the remote at the door. Right above the light switch made the best sense. So to turn the system on or off, or adjust the temp, I have to walk 5' or so into the shop. Not really a big deal for me.
The instructions say the remote should work up to 26' away. Even with new batteries i don't see any difference.
Makes me wonder about the wifi app. I know my router has the range to reach the unit, but does the indoor unit have the range to reach back to the router.

So even with the remote, and wifi issues. I'm going to give this unit 5 stars. It does all I need it to do. keeps my shop as cool as I want it to be. And I knew about the wifi app issue before I purchased the system. I leave it set at 80 when I'm out of the shop, and when I want to work out there, I put it down to 75. Mid summer without it, the shop would be 90 to 95 by noon. never below 85 even at night.
I do have a thermometer about 15' from the main unit. I have moved it around the shop, and the temp stays within a degree all over the shop. so I think the follow me feature is sort of point less any way.

So a little update.
June 14th 2020. My system is almost 2 years old, and working perfectly.
Last summer I did play with the app a little. And as before I could not make it work at all.
And I replaced the batteries in the remote may 1st 2020. Now the remote reaches the system at max range. So the new batteries last year must not have been all that.
So summer is when I really use this system.
So as mentioned above. July 4th 2018 it was running. That 1st summer i only turned it on when I was going to be in the shop. So it may be 90 in there when I get home from work. Turn it on to 76°, and about an hour later it would be down around 80° and cooling nicely.
Summer 2019 I chose to keep the shop cool 24/7.
80° when I'm away, and 76° when I go out to work.

It does not get to cold here in the winter. And I have only used the heater a few times.
When I have used the heat. I tend to run it about an hour and turn it off. Shop stays nice and warm.
So before I had this system. I would open the door to the house, and place a fan in my laundry room to pull cool air into the shop. About 82° is the best I could get on a 100°+ day.
Now last summer, not only did I keep the shop cool 24/7. But my power bill is noticeably lower.
Very happy I went with this system.

1/6/2021
So another edit, or quick update.
As mentioned before I chose to keep the shop cool 24/7 this year. I now have also chose to stay warm.
Doesn't get that cold here, but still shop would get down into the 50s, on a regular basis.
I did play with settings as to keep it at 65, and turn it up when I was actually in the shop. But that didn't
Last long. I now just keep it at 70. The little thermometer I keep across the shop from the unit reads 67. Very comfortable in the shop year round.
I also had no real change in my power bill this last summer keeping the system running 24/7.
Mini split is so efficient, I think it cost more to fiddle with the thermostat vs stay a constant temp.
Mention about cleaning filters by others. This system and most mini splits I have seen use little washable screens.
I try to remember to pull them and blow them off with an air gun monthly.

7/9/2022
So probably the last update since there is not much more to say.
Winter of 2021 I left it on all winter. But winter 2022 I went back to only running it as needed. winters are so mild here that I just don't need it much.
Summer on the other hand is brutal. For years now I let it run all summer 24/7. I learned early that it actually help the power bill. And this year I have kept the shop at 77. bump it down to 74 when I am working, and if I feel warm. So four full years and still going strong.
Crazy that I waited so long to pull the trigger on this.

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